EDITORIAL: My 13 most anticipated movies of 2013
I'll admit what all of you think of and say about me already (and probably have for years). I'm that movie nerd who reads the websites, never wants to be late for previews, and is that guy who, ever year, just hopes he stays living long enough to see the next big movie. I'm the guy you ban from playing Scene It! with your friends. I'm the guy who you ask about some movie you've heard about or seen and I likely give you a Wikipedia-sized "thumbnail" that goes on far too long. You pegged me right. Guilty as charged! You know how much of a movie nerd I am? I'm the movie nerd that is right now writing his wish list for 2013 like a kid making a Christmas list.
THE MOVIES I AM MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO IN 2013
(in chronological order): A Good Day to Die Hard, The Place Beyond the Pines, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Oz: The Great and Powerful, The Heat, 42, The Hangover Part III, The Fast and Furious 6, Now You See Me, The Internship, This is the End, The Wolverine, White House Down, Prisoners, Rush, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Old Boy, The World's End, Ender's Game, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Last Vegas, Jack Ryan
13. Gangster Squad-- It's a shame this film got bumped from last August until January 11, but the anticipation has built up nicely for a period crime movie from director Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland). I'm a big fan of the 1940s and 1950s time period and stuff like L.A. Confidential, so this one is right up my alley. I'll gladly take the cop team of Josh Brolin and Ryan Gosling taking on gangster Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn) with a dame (Emma Stone) in the middle. (trailer)
12. World War Z-- I'm not very into the whole zombie trend created by TV's The Walking Dead, but I can't deny the really interesting and taut suspense created by this movie's first trailer for this summer. Starring Brad Pitt and directed by Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace, Monster's Ball, Finding Neverland), this one is set to premiere June 21.
11. Elysium-- Of all of the original science fiction flicks coming out in 2013 (including the additional "honorable mention" of After Earth, Oblivion,The Host, and Gravity), this one comes up as the first of two to make my list. From the director of District 9 and starring Academy Award winners Matt Damon and Jodie Foster, this one takes place in 2159 when the wealthy of Earth live on a space station while the rest of the planet below resides in squalid conditions. (August 9) (no trailer yet)
10. Monument Men-- Like Clint Eastwood before him and Ben Affleck after him, George Clooney continuously has shown that his talent behind the camera as director (Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, Good Night and Good Luck, Leatherheads, and The Ides of March) sometimes exceeds his own talent as an actor. His fifth directorial effort, Monument Men, surrounds the a team of art curators and historians (including Daniel Craig, Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, John Goodman, The Artist Best Actor winner Jean Dujardin, and Clooney himself) trying to recover stolen classic art from the Nazis during World War II. (no release date and no trailer yet)
9. Wolf of Wall Street-- When it comes to directors, George Clooney is ever-improving, but it doesn't get any better than Martin Scorsese. For his latest film, he dives into the double-breasted suits and excess of the 1980s. This film doesn't have a trailer or a firm release date, but Scorsese assembles Leonardo DiCaprio (his regular post-De Niro muse), Jonah Hill, Matthew McConaughey, Jon Favreau, Kyle Chandler, and Jean Dujardin (again) to move through the world of stockbrokers, federal fraud investigation, and mob involvement. Really, all you had to say was "Scorsese" and "mob involvement" to get me interested. (no release date and no trailer)
8. Pacific Rim-- The second of those original science fiction selections is this summer blockbuster coming from director Guillermo del Toro (the Hellboy series) where giant piloted robots are utilized to take on an invading alien menace. This has big hitter written all over it. The cast includes Sons of Anarchy's Charlie Hunnan and Ron Perlman, along with Idris Elba, Charlie Day, and Rinko Kikuchi. (July 12) (trailer)
7. The Great Gatsby-- Like Gangster Squad, I've been ready and intrigued to see what Baz Luhrmann could do with F. Scott Fitzgerald since it was supposed to come out last year. Bumped six months for an upgrade to 3D, Leonardo DiCaprio leads Carey Mulligan, Tobey Maguire, and Joel Edgerton in the classic tale of tragedy and obsession. Could Leo be competing with himself (Wolf of Wall Street) by the end of the year for a Best Actor Oscar? We shall see. (May 10) (trailer)
6. Anchorman: The Legend Continues-- I'm a sucker for Will Ferrell and it's awesome to see the Channel 4 news team (Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, Dave Koechner, and Christina Applegate) back together for more adventures. After years of rumors, this sequel is finally on its way. Skyrockets in flight! Count me in! (December 20) (teaser)
5. Thor: The Dark World-- The second phase of Marvel's road toThe Avengers 2 begins in 2013. Later in the year after Iron Man 3 (see #4) opens the party, Thor: The Dark World takes the God of Thunder to dark realms and evils in other parts of the universe. Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins, Tom Hiddleston, and Idris Elba all return with Christopher Eccleston and Adewale-Akinnouye-Agbaje joining the cast on the villain's side of things. Game of Thrones veteran director Alan Taylor replaces Kenneth Branagh. (November 8)
4. Iron Man 3-- It's fitting that Marvel's biggest success that got the Avengers ball rolling gets to open the second phase of the studio's slate. Commanding a summer opening release, Iron Man 3, led by director Shane Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) replacing Jon Favreau, foretells the arrival of Tony Stark/Iron Man's (Robert Downey, Jr.) greatest comic villain, the Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) and alluded dose of tragedy. Iron Man 3 is the important first step to springboarding off of the huge success of last year's $623+ million monster The Avengers. With Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, and, in another world,The Wolverine with Hugh Jackman (July 26), this is poised to be another big year for Marvel. (May 3) (trailer)
3. Star Trek Into the Darkness-- While I wasn't a huge Star Trek fan before 2009, writer-director J.J. Abrams and his rebooted cast (Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldana, John Cho, and Simon Pegg) hit the ball out of the ballpark four years ago, breathing new life into a tired and nearly dead franchise. After seeing the first nine minutes of this new film before The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in IMAX last month, I'm hooked. The sequel is promises a dynamic and intimidating mystery villain from Benedict Cumberbatch that looks outstanding in early footage. (May 17) (trailer)
2. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug-- This middle chapter of Peter Jackson's trilogy leapfrogs Star Trek Into the Darkness because the middle chapter of every great trilogy (The Empire Strikes Back, The Godfather Part II, The Dark Knight) tends to be the best film of the series. You also get another dose of Benedict Cumberbatch. I'm down for some dragon-slaying! December 13th can't get here soon enough. (no trailer yet, but watch The Hobbit's trilogy teaser again).
1. Man of Steel-- This is my slam dunk #1 by a Smallville, Kansas country mile. As a comic book kid at heart, Superman was always my favorite and the Christopher Reeve original from 1978 is an absolute treasure of a movie in my house. While I wasn't as disappointed with 2006's Superman Returns as everyone else seemed to be, I'm extremely enthusiastic about the revamped and brand new modern origin being shepherded by The Dark Knight trilogy team of David Goyer and Christopher Nolan. Directed by Zack Snyder (300, Watchmen) and starring Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Michael Shannon, Laurence Fishburne, and Russell Crowe, everything looks spectacular and I'm glad Warner Bros. is doing their best to keep this one close to the vest. I guarantee I will be in line somewhere in Chicago a midnight on June 14th to see the final result. (June 14) (teaser #1) (teaser #2) (full trailer)
There's my 2013 wish list. I'd love to hear what's on your list. Feel free to comment and share. Enjoy the new year and go out and see a movie!